The technology giants need to be wary as the US Justice Department has announced that they will investigate the leading platforms. They will examine whether they are unfairly restricting the competition. The Department of Justice has not named any companies they will investigate but top firms like Facebook, Google, Amazon, and Apple will likely be scrutinized.
The DoJ has said that the investigation is sparked by “widespread concerns” about “search, social media, and some retail services online.” This scrutiny will be the latest tech firms’ power over the US economy. The Department of Justice is too powerful that they can investigate any firm suspected of breaching competition laws. They can even break up the top companies that they think are too powerful.
Department of Justice is not alone in this venture as the US Federal Trade Commission is already looking into similar concerns, while the European Union are investigating on their behalf as well. It was reported last month that the Justice Department is preparing an investigation of Google. The suspicions are they Google had broken anti-trust law.
The US Department of Justice has said that the anti-trust review would consider “whether and how market-leading online platforms have achieved market power and are engaging in practices that have reduced competition, stifled innovation or otherwise harmed consumers”. The main issues that they will investigate are how the big tech firms were able to grow so much in size, power, and expanding their additional businesses.
Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim, who heads the Anti-trust Division, said in a statement that, “Without the discipline of meaningful market-based competition, digital platforms may act in ways that are not responsive to consumer demands.” They have not named the companies under investigation but it is assumed that Apple, Amazon, Facebook, and Google will be the hot targets.